Let’s talk “New Mom Gifts.” Back when I was preggo, I found it was easy to obsess over questions such as “How many onesies do I need on our baby registry, what size shoes does a newborn wear, what is the best diaper pail, and which car seat is the safest?” Especially with our first baby.
By the second, and third time around though, I became a self-proclaimed expert at whittling down all the stuff to just the basics. Basically there are the items you want ($2300 eco-friendly Ubabub Pod Crib), and the items you actually need (muslin swaddle blankets).
I found that some of my favorite gifts we received after our kiddos were born, weren’t on any registry. Pre-made freezer meals, a basket of fresh fruits, cheese and crackers, and a tiny fridge for storing drinking water in Baby’s room, for example.
Here are some ideas for new mom gifts that aren’t on registries, including some non-clutter ideas like house cleaning or car detailing. Because sometimes the all the “stuff” that goes along with a new baby can be overwhelming.
So… here are my gift ideas for new parents:
FREEZER MEALS – The majority of this blog contains recipes, and a bunch of those are freezer meals. If you use the search feature on here and type in “freezer” you can find a ton of easy make-ahead meals. Here are just a few ideas that would be good to take to a new mom:
- Shop Once Make 10 Freezer Recipes (lasagna, soup, chili, chicken, pork chops, individual burritos)
- Slow Cooker Black Bean & Corn Salsa Chicken (just put all the ingredients into a gallon bag and freeze)
- Meatloaf (nice and compact so they don’t take up a lot of freezer space)
- Spinach Lasagna Roll-Ups (I love these because they can be made individually – perfect for serving 1 or a bunch)
- Greek Marinated Chicken (just stash all the ingredients in a ziplock and freeze)
If you don’t want to make your own recipes, you could bring a baker’s dozen of bagels and some cream cheese to New Mama. The leftover bagels can be frozen for later.
FRUITS & SNACKS – As I mentioned earlier one of the favorite gifts we received was a fruit basket. My husband’s work sent us an arrangement of fruit, cheese, and crackers (and a few pieces of chocolate) from a local grocery store. It was so nice to be able to grab a quick snack, since fruits don’t require much (if any) preparation. You could even make your own DIY New Mom Basket and fill it with healthy food: energy bars, avocados, kiwis, pomegranates, dried apricots, peaches, pears, etc. Anything high in fiber to keep things “moving” might be a nice touch too. 😉
Here are some snack ideas from, guess where? This blog! 😉 These could easily be part of a new parents gift…
- Sriracha Lime Garlic Roasted Chickpeas (these are perfect to package into little individual low-fat snack packs)
- Fruit Kabobs (just skewer some fruit and stash them in New Mom’s fridge for some grab-and-go snacks)
- Chocolate Covered Blueberries (seriously – just 2 ingredients!)
ALCOHOL / NO ALCOHOL – Let’s face it: after 9 months without wine or beer, a gift of a wine of the month club might be just what a new mom needs! When my husband and I took a birthing class the instructor said that after birth, the barley and hops in beer can increase milk supply. I am not sure if that’s true, but I went with it, tee hee.
If you want to forgo alcohol you could always consider non-alcoholic beer (still has the hops and barley)! Or try some other fun non-alchoholic, non-cafinated drinks: Izze, San Pellegrino limonata, or The Switch Sparkling Juice.
Here’s a cute idea: whip up some Mommy Mocktails using recipes from “Preggatinis” by Natalie Bovis Nelsen.
WATER – New moms, and especially nursing moms, need to stay hydrated. When our son was born I kept a mini-fridge in his room and stocked it with bottled water. Ahh the memories. We drank together. Milk for him, water for me, ha.
You could even give a subscription to a water delivery service. “Oh Culligan man! Bring that giant water jug to the nursery!”
BOOKS – Does the new mom in your life have an eReader? Or does she like physical, good ol’ turn-the-page, books? Either way here are some book suggestions for easy to read, light-hearted, often crass and sarcastic, but always hilarious books I’ve enjoyed:
- I Just Want to Pee Alone (by a bunch of hilarious bloggers)
- I Just Want to Be Alone (by a bunch of hilarious bloggers)
- I Still Just Want to Pee Alone (yep you guessed it, ALSO by a bunch of hilarious bloggers)
- I Heart My Little A-Holes: A bunch of holy-crap moments no one ever told you about parenting by Karen Alpert
- Toddlers Are A**holes: It’s Not Your Fault by Bunmi Laditan
- Ketchup Is a Vegetable: And Other Lies Moms Tell Themselves by Robin O’Bryant
- The Big Book of Parenting Tweets by Kate Hall
- Moms Who Drink and Swear: True Tales of Loving My Kids While Losing My Mind by Nicole Knepper
CLUTTER FREE – As any parent can tell you, baby “stuff” can quickly take over a house. Toys, exersaucers, Boppy pillows, Bumbo seats, swings, play mats, and play yards can fill your space faster than you can say “Baby Bjorn.” Here are some ideas for non-stuff gifts.
- Amazon Prime Gift Membership – I cannot express how much I looooovvvveee Amazon Prime. Seriously. I am obsessed. I might be way off here but I could possibly be part of the reason the USPS delivers Amazon packages on Sunday. And you’re welcome, UPS man, for the job security. (Just kidding. He probably hates having to stop at our door every. single. day.) Amazon Prime is perfect for free 2 day shipping on diapers, wipes, or anything – literally anything – a new mom could need. I could go on forever about the awesome benefits of Prime. That’s what I call it now. ‘Cause we’re close like that. If you aren’t in a hurry for your order you can opt for standard shipping and usually get a “perk” like a credit toward eBooks or music downloads, or even a free shipping credit on a PrimePantry box. You can listen to tons of free songs and albums on Amazon’s Prime Music, and watch Prime shows and movies to your heart’s content.
- Car Detailing – a gift certificate for a car detailing would be an awesome no-clutter idea to give a new mom. Who doesn’t love a squeaky clean car/minivan/SUV to drive new babies around in?!? Especially if this is a second or third kid, and the floormats are covered in goldfish crackers and petrified French fries. Trust me. It’s how it always turns out.
- Offer to take older sibling(s) out for special older brother/sister time.
- Get a babysitter for the baby and take Mom out for a girls date. Lunch, pedis, hair blow-outs, or even a practical trip to Costco. Or, buy a hotel night for new Mom and Dad while you watch the baby. Chances are that for the new parents, there will be lots of, well, you know, um, SLEEPING going on. Aww yeah. 🙂
- Gift certificate for a maid service. I would have loooved to have someone clean our house after our babies were born. If not a few times, at least just once. Just kidding; I STILL want someone to clean our house. Hint hint! Or you could give a gift certificate for a laundry service, so new Mom can let somebody else wash all the onsies with poop stains up the back and the odd number of socks (because, seriously, do you ever end up with an even number?).